Monday, September 10, 2018
The Atlantic County Division of Public Health has identified more mosquito samples that have tested positive for West Nile Virus. The results were confirmed on September 7 from samples collected in Hammonton, Mullica Township and Hamilton Township.
The Hammonton positives were found in the vicinity of Mill Run Drive and Horton Street, where positive samples were previously found. The Mullica positive was collected from a monitoring site in the Green Bank area far from any residences and the Hamilton Township positive was collected from Lake Lenape West park.
Previous positive samples were collected from Linwood, Northfield and Pleasantville. The Division of Public Health continues to conduct outreach and education in locations where positive samples have been identified.
Additional ground sprays to reduce the population of adult mosquitoes will be scheduled as soon as the weather permits, according to the county’s Office of Mosquito Control. Right now the forecast for rain continuing through the week prohibits any plans for immediate spraying.
West Nile Virus is carried by infected mosquitoes and can be transmitted to birds, animals and humans. Most infected humans will not develop symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control, but those who do may experience a fever, headache and body aches, vomiting, diarrhea or rash.
State health officials have confirmed four human cases of West Nile Virus in 2018, the most recent in a Cape May County resident. Other cases involved elderly residents in Essex, Hudson and Hunterdon counties. To date, there have not been any cases found in Atlantic County this year. Health officials encourage residents to reduce their risk and the spread of West Nile Virus by following these tips:
* Use an insect repellent whenever going outdoors. Repellents are an important tool to assist people in protecting themselves from mosquito-borne diseases. The Centers for Disease Control recommends the use of products containing active ingredients which have been registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for use as repellents applied to skin and clothing and approved for efficacy and human safety when applied as directed. Be sure to follow product directions carefully and consult with your child’s doctor prior to using on children.
* Rid properties of mosquito breeding grounds by draining standing water. Mosquitoes do not travel far from where they breed. Buckets, bird baths, flower pots and other containers can hold water and provide an ideal environment for mosquitoes. Be sure to empty these containers regularly.
* Clean clogged gutters; check and repair screen doors.
For more information about West Nile Virus, visit the Atlantic County Web site at: www.aclink.org/publichealth or call the Division of Public Health at (609) 645-5971. If you need assistance in removing stagnant puddles or floodwater from your property, call the Office of Mosquito Control at (609) 645-5948.